Massive explosion near port area rocks Lebanon's capital city of Beirut

Andrew Cummings
August 5, 2020

Israel, which has fought several wars with Lebanon, denied any role.

Offers of worldwide support have poured in.

Shi'ite Iran, the main backer of militant political party Hezbollah, also offered support, as did Tehran's regional rival Saudi Arabia, a leading Sunni power.

At least 100 people have been killed in the disaster, with the death toll expected to rise further. 'There are victims and casualties everywhere'. A security source and media said it was started by welding work being carried out on a hole in the warehouse.

People walked around in shock, with helicopters overhead and teams searching for the missing at sea.

"Those responsible will pay the price, ' he said in his televised address, adding that details about the 'dangerous warehouse" would be made public.

The head of the Lebanese Red Cross told local broadcasters on Wednesday that more than 100 people had died following the blast at a warehouse in the city's port.

A general view shows the damage near the site of Tuesday's blast in Beirut's port area.

The explosion appeared to be centred around Beirut's port - and an Associated Press photographer witnessed people wounded on the ground near the area.

The council on Tuesday declared Beirut as an afflicted city while urging the Lebanese cabinet to announce a state of emergency in the city for two weeks.

Lebanese officials linked the blast to 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate, which had been stored at a warehouse in Beirut since 2013, when it was confiscated from an unsafe ship that was reportedly delivering the cargo to Mozambique.

The prime minister called for a day of mourning.

It also happened days before Friday's scheduled verdict by a UN-backed court in the case of the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri.

Other reports by iNewsToday